Going into a weekend jam-packed with Rugby World Cup action - with at least two tournament-defining games to look forward to - Scott Yeoman looks at seven things you need to know tonight.

1. All Blacks

After this morning's 58-14 win over Namibia, the All Blacks have more than a week off before they play Georgia at Millennium Stadium in Cardiff. The game is next Saturday at 8am (NZ time). The next two days will be spent meeting sponsorship obligations and taking part in media sessions, before the team bus leaves for Cardiff on Saturday afternoon (UK time).

For reaction and analysis of this morning's game, read this piece by the Herald on Sunday's rugby writer Gregor Paul. The Herald's Chris Rattue has also rated the performances of the All Blacks and the best of the Namibians.

Advertisement
It's not often the All Blacks can score more than 50 points and not feel good about life. But there you go - that's what happens when the world's best team has to play the weakest at this World Cup. The reasons why the All Blacks won't be feeling great are several. They didn't ever find the flow and cohesion they were after.

2. Argentina v. Georgia

This is the next cab off the rank and, after Georgia's upset over Tonga last weekend, the match at 3.45am (NZT) tomorrow should be a little bit more interesting than previously thought. Argentina will be without lock Mariano Galarza for the rest of the World Cup after he was given a nine-week ban for eye-gouging Brodie Retallick in Monday morning's game.

Argentina will be appealing the ban, however, and are insisting Galarza is innocent. AFP reported that the Argentina Rugby Union said it "fully supports the statement by Mariano Galarza, backed by the UAR, in the sense that no illegal play was seen by that player." The Pumas have also made three other changes for tomorrow's game, including lock Guido Petti being replaced by Matias Alemanno after he suffered a head knock against the All Blacks. Juan Manuel Leguizamon and Facundo Isa are also in for Pablo Matera and Leonardo Senatore.

The Georgian side remains unchanged from the weekend. New Zealand-born Georgian coach Milton Haig has been playing up the chances of an upset, saying all of the pressure is on the Pumas. The TAB has Argentina paying $1.04 for the win and Georgia $9.

Argentina: Joaquin Tuculet, Santiago Cordero, Marcelo Bosch, Juan Martin Hernandez, Juan Imhoff, Nicolas Sanchez, Tomas Cubelli; Facundo Isa, Juan Martin Fernandez Lobbe, Tomas Lavanini, Matias Alemanno, Nahuel Tetaz Chaparro, Agustin Creevy (captain), Marcos Ayerza. Reserves: Julian Montoya, Lucas Noguera, Ramiro Herrera, Javier Ortega Desio, Pablo Matera, Martin Landajo, Jeronimo De La Fuente, Lucas Gonzalez Amorosino.

Georgia: Merab Kvirikashvili, Tamaz Mchedlidze, Davit Kacharava, Merab Sharikadze, Giorgi Aptsiauri, Lasha Malaguradze, Vasil Lobzhanidze; Mamuka Gorgodze (captain), Viktor Kolelishvili, Giorgi Tkhilaishvili, Konstantine Mikautadze, Giorgi Nemsadze, Davit Zirakashvili, Jaba Bregvadze, Mikheil Nariashvili. Reserves: Shalva Mamukashvili, Karlen Asieshvili, Levan Chilachava, Levan Datunashvili, Shalva Sutiashvili, Giorgi Begadze, Giorgi Pruidze, Muraz Giorgadze.

3. England v. Wales

The game of the weekend is being played at the home of English rugby, Twickenham, at 8am on Sunday morning (NZ time). The build up for it has been massive, with most British newspapers filling their websites with pre-game coverage - everything from the "controversial" team changes by England, to Wales being given a "warning" by World Rugby for using players outside of their World Cup squad for a training session. New Zealand-born Wales coach Warren Gatland was quick to hit back at these accusations and has also been accused of playing his usual media games earlier in the week.

Advertisement

Gatland has named nine changes in his starting line-up after Wales' 54-9 win over Uruguay on Monday morning. Scott Baldwin, captain Sam Warburton, Gareth Davies, Hallam Amos, Scott Williams and Liam Williams have all remained in the starting 15. Interestingly, seven of the Welsh players taking to the field on Sunday morning also started for Wales when they last beat England at Twickenham on February 25, 2012. It is also the fourth Rugby World Cup appearance for Gethin Jenkins, making him the third Welsh player to reach this incredible milestone.

England, as reported earlier in the week, will be starting with former rugby league player Sam Burgess at inside centre despite his lack of big-game experience. Equally as controversial, Owen Farrell will come in for George Ford at first five and Brad Barritt will move to outside centre. Billy Vunipola will also start at No 8. The changes come after both Ben Morgan and Jonathan Joseph were ruled out due to injury. The TAB has England as the favourites - paying $1.27 for them to win. Wales are paying $3.50 to win.

England: Mike Brown, Anthony Watson, Brad Barritt, Sam Burgess, Jonny May, Owen Farrell, Ben Youngs; Billy Vunipola, Chris Robshaw (captain), Tom Wood, Courtney Lawes, Geoff Parling, Dan Cole, Tom Youngs, Joe Marler. Reserves: Rob Webber, Mako Vunipola, Kieran Brookes, Joe Launchbury, James Haskell, Richard Wigglesworth, George Ford, Alex Goode.

Wales: Liam Williams, George North, Scott Williams, Jamie Roberts, Hallam Amos, Dan Biggar, Gareth Davies; Taulupe Faletau, Sam Warburton (captain), Dan Lydiate, Alun Wyn Jones, Bradley Davies, Tomas Francis, Scott Baldwin, Gethin Jenkins. Reserves: Ken Owens, Aaron Jarvis, Samson Lee, Luke Charteris, Justin Tipuric, Lloyd Williams, Rhys Priestland, Alex Cuthbert.

Radio Sport: Tournament headlines

4. Samoa v. South Africa

This must win game for the Springboks is at 4.45am on Sunday morning (NZ time) at Villa Park in Birmingham. The South Africans have made eight changes to their starting line-up after last weekend's upset to Japan and are under all sorts of pressure to re-assert themselves as top of Pool B contenders. Adriaan Strauss is starting at hooker in front of Bismarck du Plessis, who has been left out of the squad altogether. Fourie du Preez and Duane Vermeulen both come in and so does Eben Etzebeth. Damian de Allende and JP Pietersen, as well as Handre Pollard, will also start. Willie le Roux returns to the back line and captain Jean de Villiers has been moved to outside centre. Schalk Brits and Frans Malherbe have also been named on the bench.

Meanwhile, Samoa have only made three changes to their starting line-up after their 25-15 win over the USA. Mike Stanley, TJ Ioane and Motu Matu'u are all coming in to the starting 15, replacing Tusi Pisi, Maurie Fa'asavalu and Ole Avei. Vavea Tuilagi and George Pisi have also come on to the bench. South Africa are paying $1.05 for the win at the TAB, while Samoa are paying $8.50.

South Africa: Willie le Roux, JP Pietersen, Jean de Villiers (captain), Damian De Allende, Bryan Habana, Handre Pollard, Fourie du Preez, Duane Vermeulen, Schalk Burger, Francois Louw, Victor Matfield, Eben Etzebeth, Jannie du Plessis, Adriaan Strauss, Tendai Mtawarira. Reserves: Schalk Brits, Trevor Nyakane, Frans Malherbe, Lood de Jager, Siya Kolisi, Ruan Pienaar, Pat Lambie, Jesse Kriel.

Samoa: Tim Nanai-Williams, Ken Pisi, Paul Perez, Rey Lee-Lo, Alesana Tuilagi, Mike Stanley, Kahn Fotuali'i; Ofisa Treviranus (captain), Jack Lam, TJ Ioane, Iosefa Tekori, Teofilo Paulo, Anthony Perenise, Motu Matu'u, Sakaria Taulafo. Reserves: Ole Avei, Viliamu Afatia, Census Johnston, Faifili Levave, Vavae Tuilagi, Vavao Afemai, Tusi Pisi, George Pisi.

5. Player rankings

5. Team rankings

7. Standings after this morning's games:

EXTRA TIME

If you're wanting a change from the tonne of articles currently being written by every kind of rugby expert and pundit, why not read one by someone who admittedly knows nothing about the game? An American no less. This piece by ESPN.com columnist and senior writer Jim Caple gives you a good idea of how non-rugby playing nations see the game and, more interestingly, what weird comparisons they make of it at first glance.

And following on from the fan zone video from yesterday, this Rugby World Cup photo gallery on the Belfast Telegraph is worth five or more minutes of your time. There's 186 photos to get through.